Department for Education. 2018.

Department for Education and Department of Health. 2015.

Häggman-Laitila A, Salokekkilä P, Karki S Transition to adult life of young people leaving foster care: a qualitative systematic review.. Children and Youth Services Review. 2018; 95:(1)134-143

National Institute of Clinical Excellence. 2015.

National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. 2019.

Wood M, Selwyn J Looked after children and young people's views on what matters to their subjective well-being.. Adoption and Fostering. 2017; 41:(1)20-34

Children and young people in care

24 October 2019
Volume 28 · Issue 19

Children and young people in care are a vulnerable group in society, and are known to have poorer health and educational outcomes compared with their peers. It is important that nurses understand the personal and social background of this population to ensure that appropriate assessment and support can be provided. By appreciating the context of this group, nursing care can be improved; however, individualised input remains vital.

There are several terms used to identify children and young people who are, or have experience of being, in care. In England, the term used in clinical practice is ‘looked after child’ abbreviated to LAC, based on the underpinning legislation—the Children Act 1989. When asked, children and young people themselves state that they prefer the term ‘children in care’ (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, 2019). This is because the term ‘looked after’ suggests that they were not looked after in their previous setting, which many children and young people find a distressing implication.

Register now to continue reading

Thank you for visiting British Journal of Nursing and reading some of our peer-reviewed resources for nurses. To read more, please register today. You’ll enjoy the following great benefits:

What's included

  • Limited access to clinical or professional articles

  • Unlimited access to the latest news, blogs and video content